Whether you call them trainers, sneakers, running shoes, tennis shoes, daps or plimsolls, that ubiquitous canvas footwear with the rubber soles is not only de rigueur for any and all athletic endeavour but also one of the hottest fashion trends in shoes right now. The category Men’s Trainers & Men’s Shoes is definitely showcasing trainers stage centre right now, Trainers go with any outfit – up to and including business attire, thanks to style mavens Kanye White and Justin Timberlake who wore them with business suits. Trainers are environmentally friendly: no animal was stripped of its skin just so your feet could look good. Best of all, as trendy as they are, the cost of trainers is so low that you can buy a dozen pairs if you want
What’s the history of trainers? How did they rise to such preeminence? The first rubber soled shoes were developed as long ago as the late 1700s. Like most shoes of that error, they made no allowances for the differences in shape between a wearer’s right foot and left foot. Men’s trainers & Men’s shoes didn’t get really comfortable until the beginning of the 20th century! Today, though, wearing a different color trainer on each foot has become a fad.
In 1916, the venerable brand Keds made its first appearance. The shoe was manufactured by the company U.S. Rubber – the first and last time that business made a splash in the men’s trainers & Mens shoes industry. Keds were quickly succeeded in popularity by a shoe designed exclusively for basketball by a physician named Dr. John Marquis Converse who used his own surname as a brand name.
For the first ten years of their existence, trainers were purely an American phenomenon. When they finally crossed the Atlantic Ocean in the early 1920s, they took what is now the men’s trainers & shoes industry by storm. A German man named Adi Dassler became one of the earliest European designers, and named his first product by combining the first three letters of his first and last name: Adidas. Track phenomenon Jesse Owens wore Adidas in the contests that won him four gold medals at the 1936 Olympics.
But what of the concurrent history of sneakers as a statement of style? The rubber soled shoe probably got its first fashion endorsement from James Dean in the wildly popular film Rebel Without a Cause. Then came rock n’ roll. The rest, as they say, is history.